N WW TOPE
^jsar l*? - .:•■ v >v
In Orange Bounty, J^f. G.
By Rev. D. I. GRASC,
RE6DSVSLLE, N. C.
/ - .
It has long been a source of great grief to me that the
early history of New Hope church should be so imperfectly
known, and permitted to remain in comparative obscurity
with the prospect of passing away into oblivion. If the his-
tory of a church or a community is lost or unknown we
fail to see the oft-repeated fulfilment of the promises of God
to His people. Generation after generation come and go
and leave behind them a history, and if this be lost or
unknown their children may be ignorant of the fact that they
are enjoying blessings and privileges which are but the ful-
filment of an unchanging promise to their God-fearing ances-
tors. We easily lose the line of our ancestry, and conse-
quently we lose their history, which, if known, might teach
us the great lesson that " God is not slack concerning His
promise, as some men count slackness." How can we know
the fulfilment of the promise, " I will be a God unto thee and
to thy seed after thee," unless we know our ancestry?
New Hope church, the cradle of my infancy and the
church of my fathers, has a history; and while much of it is
involved in doubt and uncertainty, yet much of it may be
known and should not be lost or forgotten. Therefore in my
leisure hours I have felt it incumbent on me to collect
together certain facts and dates and put them into such shape
that they might be preserved for future generations. From
my childhood I have loved the dear old New Hope church
and, having always had a desire to know her early history, I
have gathered together much data in this pamphlet which I
am confident is not generally known. If I have made mis-
takes it has been done through ignorance, and I hope by the
help of others at some future day to correct them. I know
the work i.s imperfectly done, but I have the consolation of
knowing, also, that something, at least, has been preserved,
which otherwise might have been lost forever. And humbly
hoping that it may do some good among my kindred and
friends by way of strengthening their faith in the promises
of God and leading them to the Saviour, I commit these pages
to my brethren in the Lord of New Hope congregation.
D. IRVIN CRAIG.
Reidsville, N. C, May 22, 1886.
Since writing the first edition of this sketch, I have re-
ceived numbers of letters from various persons, especially in
the western states desiring copies of this little book. I could
not supply them, as it was out of print and the limited number
of copies long since exhausted.
In the meantime certain facts and data have come into
my possession which will he interesting to the reader and are
a valuable addition to the sketch. I am largely indebted to
Mr. John A. Freeland, of Illinois, for much of the informa-
I have endeavored to correct former mistakes and errors,
and I hope the little book will find favor with all who are
interested in it, and prove a blessing to the church.
D. I. CRAIG.
Reidsville, N. C, January 14, 189],
History of New Hope Ghursh,
About two hundred years ago the middle section of
North Carolina was one wild and extensive wilderness, inhab-
ited by savages and the wild beasts and birds of the forest.
It was about the year 1685 that Spotwood describes the en-
tire State as being without any form of government. The few
settlers, chiefly in the eastern portion of the State, "did what
was right in their own eyes, paying tribute neither to God nor
Osesar." Mr. Banceoft, says: "There was no fixed minister
in the land till 1703; no church erected till 1705; no separate
building for a court house till 1722; no printing press till 1754.
Careless of religious sects, or colleges or lawyers or absolute
laws, the early settlers enjoyed liberty of conscience and per-
sonal independance, freedom of the forest and river. The
children of nature listened to the inspirations of nature. *
* * For then the wild bee stored its honey in hollow
trees; for them unnumbered swine fattened on the fruits of
the forest or the heaps of peaches; for them in spite of their
careless lives and imperfect husbandry, cattle multiplied on
the pleasant savannahs, and they desired no greater happiness
than they enjoyed. * * They were the freest
of free; men to whom the restraints of other colonies were
too severe; they were not so much caged in the woods as scat-
tered in lonely granges. There was neither city nor township
there was hardly even hamlet or one house within sight of
6 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
another; nor were there roads, except as the paths from house
to house were distinguished by notches in the trees. But the
settlers were gentle in their manners, of serene minds, and
enemies to violence and bloodshed. Not all the successive
revolutions had kindled vindictive passions; freedom — entire
freedom — was enjoyed without anxiety as without guarantees
the charities of life were scattered at their feet like the flow-
ers in their meadows, and the spirit of humanity maintained
its influence in the Arcadia, as royalist writers will have it,
of 'rogues and rebels' in the paradise of the Quakers."
In my early days I have heard from the lips of some of
the oldest inhabitants, stories told them by their fathers
which well agree with these statements. 1 have heard of the
wild swine growing fat on fruits and of the roads which were
but Indian paths. I have been told that the road between
the New Hope and Hawfields settlements was distinguished
by notches in the trees. But it must be remembered that
when Mr. Bancroft speaks of the first minister and the first
church in North Carolina, he means the established church
of England which was imposed by law. Whether there were
not even in 1703, many rude buildings scattered through the
country called " meeting houses," after the Quaker style,
where the people met not only to worship God but for various
other purposes, is a question, for the population increased
very rapidly toward the close of the seventeenth century. But
at this very time and long before, Scotland was the scene of
endless commotions, oppressions, tyranny and bloodshed,
arisiu» from continued attempts to suppress conscientious
convictions of truth and liberty, and many of the Scotch, who
were almost exclusively Presbyterians, first fled to Holland
and thence to Ireland, where they remained a number of
y^ars, when, by fresh oppressions they were driven to seek
religious liberty in another clime; and, coming directly from
Ireland to this country, they were called "Scotch-Irish."
This was the original stock of the New Hope congregation.
They were of the most fearless character, and accustomed to
THE HAWFIELDS SETTLEMENT.
the severest hardships. They were unpretentious in their
manners and customs, and most unlearned, but as unbending
as iron pillars in their religious sentiments.
THE HAWFIELDS SETTLEMENT.
It was late in the seventeenth century or very early in
the eighteenth when the father of Gilbert Strayhorn — a
Scotchman — immigrated to America and settled in Dauphin
County, Pennsylvania, about 12 miles east of Harrisburg. We
know but little of this original family, the original name of
which was "Streaughan" or "Streaghan." This was the Scotch
spelling, but in the old deeds of this country, some of which
are in my possession, the name was spelled "Stream" The
name was also known and spelled, as will be seen hereafter,
I have learned through Mr. John A. Freeland, of Illinois,
that in this family there was a brother older than Gilbert,
whose name was David, and I will add that it is probable
there was a third son, much younger than Gilbert, whose name
was John. If this be true, there is ground for believing that
the name of the old Scotchman himself, the father of the boys,
Gilbert his son, the patriarch, and the pioneer and father
of the name " Strayhorn," was born at the aforesaid place in
Pennsylvania in the year 1715 and was the father of all the
Strayhorns in N. C. and many more who bear the same
name in the western States. This man was one of the original
founders of New Hope church, and it is not at all improbable
that he was one of the original founders of Hawfields
church at an earlier date. It was about twenty or twenty-five
years after his birth in Pennsylvania that a number of fam-
ilies, all of the Scotch-Irish stock, and bound together by the
ties of relationship and one common heartfelt desire for relig-
8 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
ious freedom, left the old world in search of a new home.
Among these families were the Craigs, the Blackwoods, the
Kirklands, the Freelands and perhaps the Mebanes, the Tates,
the Harts, the Nelsons, the Mitchells, the Johnstons, etc. I am
almost certain the Craigs, Blackwoods and Kirklands and per-
haps the Freelands, came across the Atlantic in the same ves-
sel, for they seem to have been connected by relationship in
the old country, and did not separate after landing in Amer-
ica until they were settled. Where they landed, I have no
means of knowing but it is certain they located for a time in
Pennsylvania. And precisely when they landed is a question
over which I have labored hai'd and long, but have failed to find
an answer which is perfectly satisfactory. But by comparing
the dates of old deeds in my possession, together with certain
family traditions and relics, I do not think I am far wrong —
indeed, I think I am correct — when I say it was in the year
1741. From certain facts and dates in my possession, I am
confident that it was not later than 1741 and not earlier than
1736 when these families landed on American soil. How long
they remained in Pennsylvania I do not know, but it was not
a great while, perhaps only a few months, or not more than
two years. Pennsylvania at this time was sorely tried by the
French and Indian wars, and it was chiefly on account of hos-
tile Indians that they fled to North Carolina. It was in mid
winter and as they passed through Virginia some of the
rivers were so completely frozen up that they drove their
teams over them on the solid ice. They refused to stop in
Virginia, chiefly because the established church was there in
full force. They finally reached North Carolina where they
settled in the Hawfields and remained several years — until
about 1750 or a little later. Whether Gilbert Strayhorn came
to the Hawfields settlement from Pennsylvania in company
with William Craige, William Blackwood, Mr. Kirkland and
others, I do not know; but if he did not come with them it was
not far from the same time — perhaps a little earlier. I have
been informed by an uncle of mine, W. F. Strayhorn, who
THE HAWFIELDS SETTLEMENT. 9
was a great-grandson of Gilbert, that he came to the Hawfields
in the year 1740, and if this be true he was then twenty-five
years old. He was a tailor by trade and after having lived in
the settlement a short time, he returned to Pennsylvania and
was united in marriage with Miss Margaret Roan whose
mother was the widow Hunter. He immediately returned to the
Hawfields and settled on the place where Calvin Tate now
lives, about one mile south of Mebaneville. He lived at this
place two years, during which time his eldest son, John, was
born, ( 1742 ) and then he removed into the bounds of New
Hope. It was no^jfuntil the year 1754-5, however, that he got
the deeds for his lands. It was about this time that he
changed his name from "Strean"or"Streaughn" to "Strayhorn"
and when asked the reason for the change he replied "I have
simply put a 'horn' to it to make it sound." I heard of one
or two other explanations of the change, but 1 am sure the
above was his explanation and always told in a jocular way.
It may be well to state just here an explanation of what has
long been a mystery to me. I have always been told that the
Stray horns and Strains were one family but I could never un-
derstand the connection. Mr. John A. Freeland of Illinois
who is a grandson, on his mother's side, of Alexander Strain
and who has a remarkable memory and states facts very con-
cisely as told him by his ancestors, has made the matter very
plain to me.
It seems that Gilbert Strayhorn's elder brother in Penn-
sylvania, whose name was David, had three sons. These sons
came to N. C. in search of their uncle Gilbert, and after find-
ing him in the neighborhood of New Hope, and they were no
other than Alexander, John and James Strain. They found
that their uncle had changed his name and not willing to
adopt it, they retained their name of "Strain," or at any rate
they were known by that name. It is now evident that Alex-
ander and John Strain, whose names are recorded as elders
of New Hope church before the year 1820, were nephews of
Gilbert Strayhorn. John was also his son-in-law, having mar-
10 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
ried his daughter Miriam. Mr. Freeland says the wife of
Alexander, his grandmother, was a daughter of James Hun-
ter, whose house was burned and himself outlawed by Gov.
Lyons of revlutionary fame. The Hunter family fled and
took refuge in the house of Gilbert Strayhorn, and it was
there that Alexander Strain met and married his daughter.
It is probable that James Hunter was a half brother of Gil-
bert Stray horn's wife.
Wm. Craige settled on what is known as "the old Strud-
wick place" in the Hawfields where Addison Wilson now lives.
I do not know where William Blackwood or Joseph Kirkland
and others located before coming to New Hope. It was about
this time — not far from 1750 — when it was rumored in the
Hawfields settlement that the title grants which they had
obtained for their lands through the agents of Earl Granville
were not genuine. And as this impression grew upon the
minds of the people, family after family left their premises
and moved to other localities. This was the case with Wil-
liam Craige, Gilbert Strayhorn and others, who came to the
waters of New Hope. It appears that while the Hawfields
settlement was being filled up, the Earl Granville became
deeply involved in debt — by gambling, as the traditional story
goes — to one Lord Barrington, of London, and that he trans-
ferred to him for the debt a large scope of land on the Cape
Fear river, and also the Hawfields settlements in North Caro-
lina. And a short time afterwards, Lord Barrington being-
involved with Mr. Samuel Strudwick, of London, in like man-
ner transferred the property to him. In after years one of the
descendants of Mr. Strudwick came to North Carolina and
settled where William Craige first lived. Many of the settlers
did not and would not leave taeir premises, and this whole
affair was a matter of litigation in the courts for many years
afterwards. Perhaps William Craige and some others came to
New Hope some two or three years before Gilbert Strayhorn,
but all these families were undoubtedly connected with the
first church built in the Hawfields. It is well known that the
THE HAWFIELDS SETTLEMENT. 11
Rev. Hugh McAden was the first permanent Presbyterian
minister in this section, though missionary supplies had
been sent to North Carolina before him, and it is highly prob-
able that some of these had visited the Hawfields. In Mr.
McAden's journal appears the following note :" On Friday
evening I rode to the Hawfields, where 1 preached the fourth
Sabbath in August — August 24,1755, — to a considerable
population, chiefly Presbyterian, who seemed highly pleased
and very desirous to hear the Word preached again on Tues-
day; the people came out to hear quite beyond expectation."
From this it appears evident to me that there was a house for
public worship and perhaps had been for several years.
Besides, he had come to the Hawfields from Eno, where he
had preached August 10, 1755, and there seems to have been
a house of worship there also. But my understanding as
gathered from my ancestors has always been that Hawfields
church was several years older than Eno. Therefore the first
settlers of New Hope evidently left a church in the Hawfields
when they removed, and it is well known that for a number
of years afterwards they regularly attended service there — a
distance of at least twenty miles — while Eno would have
been much nearer. They clung to the old mother church,
and long after a house of worship had been built at New
Hope they still adhered to the Hawfields; and this accounts
for the fact that New Hope church does not appear as a reg-
ular organized church until a number of years after its exist-
ence. Thus it will be seen that New Hope church not only
sprang from the original church of the Hawfields but was a
part of it, and the history of the one involves the history of
the other. The early settlers of New Hope, consisting of the
Craigs, Blackwoods, Kirklands, Freelands, Stray horns, Harts,
etc., were not only closely connected among themselves, but
had intermarried with the Nelsons, the Tates, the Tinnins,
the Mitchells, the Johnstons, etc., of the Hawfields, thus ren-
dering the bond of union and sympathy between the two set-
tlements the more close and lasting.
12 HISTORY OF NW HOE-E' CHURCH..
* THE NAME "NEW HOPE,"
As has been stated, sometime not far from the year 1750
William Craige and others, together with their sons, some of
whom were now married, determined to leave the Hawfields,
They came into the neighborhood o? New Hope, where they
saw rich bottoms, numerous creeks and springs, spacious mead-
ow lands and fine forest trees. They had an eye for the best
lands, and here — -after weary wanderings, untold hardships,
and anxieties of body and mind — they were inspired with
" new hopes,'* and at once determined upon their permanent
home. They looked upon the prospect and called it a " New
Hope." This is the explanation th it has been handed down
to me through generations, of the origin of the name of the
stream which is called "New Hope" unto this day. But
whether this or some similar circumstance lower down
and at an earlier date, or whether it originated with the
Indians, I do not certainly know. But it is of some impor-
tance to know the origin of the name of the stream, for what-
ever it may have been was likewise the origin of the name of
the church. But this is the only explanation I have ever
heard given, and it is perhaps the correct one.
The church is situated on the north side and about one mile
from this stream, which takes its rise several miles west of
the church. It flows in a south-easterly direction into the
Cape Fear, and thence into the Atlantic ocean. For more
than a century it was famous for its abundant production of
fish, and at the present time few streams of like size yield a
better supply or quality.
* Dr. Joseph Caldwell, in a speech, delivered in Hillsboro in 1833, says that an
early Company of Colonists from the Roanoke went out to make discoveries and
found this stream and out of the joy and thankfulness of their hearts, exclaimed
"New Hope." But this is traditional as well as the above.
■SOME OP THE FIRST TETTLEHS.
SOME OF THE FIRST SETTLERS,
NAMES AND PLACES.
Perhaps some of the readers of this sketch are not aware
that " the province of Carolina, embracing what is now North
and South Carolina, and extending westward to the Pacific
ocean, was granted by King Charles II. to eight lords pro-
prietors; that these surrendered their right to the crown in
1729 — one of them, Lord Carteret, afterwards Earl Gran-
ville, retaining his undivided interest in the soil, — -and at the
same time two distinct provincial governments were estab-
lished in North and South Carolina, and that in the year 1743
Earl Granville's interest was laid off in severalty, and em-
braced the northern side of North Carolina and as far south
as the Montgomery line, or near to it, and thus included the
lands in Orange county. And though this proprietor retained
no political power, his rights in the soil involved land offices
and agencies, forming a sort of government within a govern-
oient, and involving complications and burdens which added
to those grievances which helped to prepare the way for the
Revolution." This was the condition of things in l750- , 54,
when the lands around New Hope church were purchased
directly from Earl Granville. They were bought at fair pur-
chases, and not a title was stained by fraud or violence to the
original owners. The oldest purchase in the vicinity of New
Hope church was made by William Craige.
William Craige, as before stated, was a Scotch-Irishman 5
and born in the seventeenth century. He spelled his name
with a final " p," which most of his descendants have dropped.
He was married in the old country to Mrs. Margaret Long,
the widow of George Long. Her maiden name was Margaret
Logan. She had one child by Mr. Long — a son, — whose
name was George, who came with them to America, and who
shared equally with the Craig children. In after years a son
of this boy, whose name was also George, married Isabel
14 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Craig, a daughter of John Craig, the eldest son of William.
Thus it will be seen that this George Long and his wife, Isa-
bel Craig, were the children of half brothers. This was the
origin of the present Long family in the New Hope congre-
gation, which has furnished the church with one ruling elder,
George R., and two deacons, John J. and James D., — -all
brothers. By this mother of the Longs, William Craige had
five children, and at least two of them were born in Ireland,
and perhaps four of them; for John, the eldest son, was a lad
of some twelve or fourteen years old when they came across
the ocean, while James was a little child in his crib not more
than two years old. The names of the other three children
were David, Samuel and Isabel. Samuel was the youngest
child, and perhaps the only one born in this country. Some
of these children were married about the time they came to
New Hope. This was the original family of William Craige,
who settled, lived and died about two or three miles west of
the church, on the south bank of New Hope stream, on the
lands now owned by Pendleton Cole, not far from a spring
nearly opposite the mouth of Richland Fork creek. He " en-
tered "and owned, together with his four sons, under the
proprietorship of Lord Granville, all the lands on both sides
of New Hope stream, several miles in width and extending
up and down the stream, from the lands formerly owned by
Baxter Davis to the present possessions of William Robson,
on the road leading from Hillsboro' to Chapel Hill, embrac-
ing a large area of country south and west from the church.
The date of his death is unknown, but he lived to be a very
old man, and his body lies buried, together with the body of
his wife, in the old Hawfields burying ground. This sacred
spot of earth, where scores of the old settlers lie buried, has
recently been plowed up and cultivated in corn, and the stones
which marked many a grave have been rudely torn down and
scattered over the fields. The perpetrator of this deed was
Addison Wilson, who has recently been indicted in the courts,
and it is to be hoped will receive just punishment for such an
outrage against humanity.
'THE FIRST SETTLERS. — NAMES AND PLACES. 15
Thei e are now no visible signs to mark the spot where the
old house of William Craige stood.
John Craig, the eldest son, married Mary Blackwood, the
•daughter of William Blackwood, and settled * the Isaac Craig
place, 1 ' afterwards owned by J. N. Craig, and now the prop-
erty of J. W. Cole. This place was settled about the same
time, or soon after the settlement of the old homestead. And
this son, John, who was a few years younger than Gilbert
Strayhorn, was one of the founders of the New Hope church.
David, who was perhaps the second son, married Nellie
Turner, of the Hawfields, and settled what is known as "the
Currie place," which was afterwards owned by J. N. Craig
and others, and now the property of J. W. Cole. The site of
the old settlement was near New Hope stream, on the north
bank, and not far to the east of the public road.
James married Rebecca Ball, whose mother was a Miss
Wilson, known as " Grandmother Ball." This old lady lived
with James Craig until she died at an advanced age. She
was an Irishwoman, and came from Pennsylvania with the
Craigs. I have often heard of her remarkable small head,
and have seen a cap she wore which was not too large for an
ordinary baby. She had an ungovernable temper, and was
wholly different from her daughter, Rebecca, who was noted
for her deep piety and godly life. The settlement of James Craig,
which was about a mile to the northeast from the old homestead,
was known as "Richland Fork, 1 ' and thefiist house stood just
west of the fork, near the confluence of the two creeks, and in
my boyhood was called "the old orchard." The last of the
old apple trees have disappeared within my memory. The
second house stood within the fork, and the walls of the third
house, in which James Craig died, are still standing. This is
the place where my grandfather, David Wilson Craig, was
born, lived and died. And according to the old deeds this
place was laid off and surveyed Dec. 4, 1754, "adjoining Wil-
liam Craig's own line," showing that he had made entries
prior to this date. It was deeded Sept. 13, 1755, and prDved
in open court the same month. It was sold by William Craige
to John Reaney June 8, 1756, and bought back from Mr.
16 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Beaney by James Craig, the son of William, in June, 1758.
It has been in the possession of the family from that day to
Samuel, married Mary Johnston of the Hawfields, and
settled on the old homestead at the place where Pendleton
Cole lived and died.
Isabel, the only daughter of William Craige, married Da-
vid Nelson, and removed to the Hawfields, where many of
her decendants are still to be found. These were the early
Craig Settlers and their places of residence.
The aforesaid sons of William Craige died, as follows:
David, November 2, 1785.
Samuel, September 21, 1790.
John, February 6, 1816.
James, July 21, 1821.
Gilbert Strayhorn, as already stated, was a few years
older than John Craig, the eldest son of William. And
while the Craig's located about two or three miles to the
south-west from the church on the waters of New Hope, this
man settled about two or three miles to the north-east from
the church on the waters of the Eqo. The church was about
midway between the two original settlements, and their lands
joined not far from it. Gilbert Stray horn's old homestead is
now owned by his direct decendant, William G. Strayhorn,
who is in the fifth generation in direct line, both from his
father and his mother. This is a singular fact, for William
Strayhorn's grandfather on his father's side and his grand-
mother on his mother's side w r ere both the grandchildren of
Gilbert Strayhorn. The site of the old place is on the south
side of the public road leading from Hillsboro to Durham,
and just opposite the present settlement. It appears from an
old deed that this place was a part of six hundred acres gran-
ted by Earl Granville to John Wood in the year 1754, and
bought by Gilbert Strayhorn in the following year 1755.
Other deeds show that Gilbert Strayhorn afterwards entered
and bought lands until he owned, together with his sons, a
large area of country, which was for many years called "the
Strayhorn neighborhood." As above stated, these lands join-
THE FIRST SETTLERS. NAMES AYV PLACES. 17
ed the lands of the Craigs on the waters of New Hope, and the
church was situated on the border of the possession next
to the Craigs. He lived to be eighty-eight years old, and
his body lies buried in the old New Hope Graveyard. He
and John Craig were the first elders and original founders
of the church. He had eight children — four sons and four
daughters. His sons were John, William, James and Da-
vid; his daughters were Nancy, Miriam, Sarah and Mary.
John, the eldest child, married Elizabeth Johnston, of
the Hawfields, and settled the place where Robert Shields
William married Mary Tate, of the Hawfields, and after-
wards Mary Hunter, and settled the place where David
Strayhorn recently lived and died.
James married Bachael Cabe, and settled the place where
John T. Hogan now lives.
David married Cabe, and afterwards Penny Berry,
and lived at the old homestead.
Nancy married James Hart, and lived near a spring just
north of '■ the Bryant Strayhorn place," and afterwards at
the place where Alexander Dickson lived and died.
Miriam married John Strain, and lived on the road a few
miles north of Chapel Hill.
Sarah married William Ansley, and moved to Georgia.
Mary married John Cabe, who settled the place where
William T. Shields lived and died.
Thus it will be seen that New Hope church was sur-
rounded for miles in extent and in every direction by the
possessions of the sons and daughters of William Craige
and Gilbert Strayhorn.
William Blackwood, one of the first settlers, located to
the south- west of the Craigs, and owned large bodies of land
known to this day as " the big meadows." And to the east of
these lands is quite an elevation, which has always been
known as "the Blackwood mountain." It is my impression,
without knowing just how I got it, that William Blackwood's
wife, Betsy, whom he married in Ireland, was a sister of
William Craige. But whether this be true or not, they were
18" HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHTIRCHT.
among the original settlers, and were both members of Haw-
fields church before coming to New Hope. Their children!
were James, John, William, Martha, Mary, Peggy, Annie and
James married, and located some miles below Chapel Hill.
AVilliam married Margaret King, and settled on the old
homestead, and John moved away.
Martha married Charles Johnston, and Mary married
John Craig, of whom mention has already been made.
Peggy married Joseph Kirkland, perhaps a son of the
Annie married a Mr. Morrow, of the Hawfields, and Jennie
married a Mr. Allen, also of the Hawfields.
It was through the above mentioned son, William, that the
name has been perpetuated in the New Hope congregation.
Joseph Kirkland was among the original settlers, and
located to the west and south of Mr. Blackwood. Two of his
grandsons, William and Joseph, married the daughters of
Samuel Craig, Betsy and Isabel; and one of his grand-
daughters, Martha, married a son of Samuel Craig, whose
name was also Samuel. The Blackwoods and Kirklands have
always been closely connected and identified with New Hope
church. From her earliest history to the present day these
families have produced a number of members and office-
bearers. At the present time both families have a represen-
tative in the session.
The Freelands were also among the original settlers and.
were closely connected with the Craigs and Kirklands. The
present Johnston family, on the waters of New Hope, is of
s omewhat later date, and on the father's side is of English
descent. But both these families have long been identified
with the church, and have furnished her with much valuable
material. But at the present time George S. Freeland, a com-
municant, and C. W. Johnston, Esq., a ruling elder, are the
only male representatives, together with their children, of
these two families in the congregation.
The Geddes family, now spelled "Gattis," in their early
history, belonged to New Hope church, but nearly all of
THE CHURCH. THE FIRST BUILDING. 19
them are now in the Methodist church. One of the descen-
dants of the old Elder Alexander, is now a Methodist Minis-
ter, Thomas, by name.
William Burns, a weaver by trade, was early on the ground
at New Hope, but the name is known no more. One of his
daughters married James Craig, a grandson of William, and
one of his grandsons moved to Texas.
There are now no male survivors in the congregation of
the Mitchell and Hart families, which figured in the early
stages of the church's history.
The Hogan family, in connection with the church, dates
from about the year 1838, and at the present time one of her
ruling elders is John T. Hogan.
THE FIRST BUILDING.
The first church building erected, and which was called
"New Hope." was situated in Orange county, five miles sonth
of Hillsboro', and about one-fourth of a mile east of the pub-
lic road leading to Chapel Hill. It was necessarily a very
rude structure, corresponding with the almost new country
and straitened circumstances of the original settlers. It
stood just outside of the old graveyard at the north-west
corner. As heretofore stated, it was built by a part of the
original Hawfields congregation, and perhaps the first inten-
tion was merely to have a " meeting-house," convenient to the
few families, where they might assemble when a minister by
chance should visit them. This is a reasonable supposition,
because it was quite a number of years after this house was
built before the church was regularly organized. I have only
traditional authority for saying that in this house Henry Pa-
tillo occasionally preached. And this also seems reasonable,
for he was the first pastor of Hawfields and Eno churches,
20 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
and as the New Hope people still adhered to the Hawfields,
he was likewise their pastor. He came to the Hawfields in
the year 1765 and left in 1774, and it is almost certain that
this house at New Hope was built before he came to the field.
But whether he or one of his immediate successors organized
the church, and whether in this house or not, will perhaps
never be known, though it is confidently believed that he did
organize the church, and in this house. I may here state
that the original records of New Hope church, together with
the records of the first twenty-five years of Orange Presby-
tery's existence, were destroyed by fire in the house of Dr.
John Witherspoon, which was burned the first day of Janu-
ary, 1827. This is a matter of deep though vain regret, as it
necessarily prevents accuracy of dates and names, as well as
the knowledge of much valuable information pertaining to the
early church. But by taking into consideration all the facts
which I have been enabled to collect, I am of the opinion
that the first church building was erected about the year
1760. It is impossible to determine anything even approxi-
mating the time by any marks in the old graveyard. The first
graves were marked with rough stones without any lettering,
and I have been told that the first person buried there was a
little child by the name of Steel, who was in some way con-
nected with Gilbert Strayhorn. The oldest date I have ever
been able to find is in the corner next to where the church
stood, and reads as follows: "D. C — N. 2. — 1785." My in-
terpretation of this inscription is: David Craig; died Novem-
ber 2, 1785. The location of the graveyard contiguous to the
church is presumptive evidence in favor of the belief that the
church was organized here, and that this house was in use a
long time. The location for both church and graveyard was
very unsuitable, the ground being entirely too low, and it
would strike one as singular that they selected tin's spot while
there are so many beautiful elevations all around. The land
upon which this church was built, as well as all the succeed-
ing ones, was at this time the property of Gilbert Strayhorn,
and whether the house was organized in this house or not.
it is certain that he and John Craig were among the original
movers in the transaction.
THE SECOND BUILDING. FIRST MINISTERS OF THE CHURCH. 21
THE SECOND BUILDING,
AND FIRST MINISTERS OF THE CHURCH.
This house was located about two hundred yards to the
south-west from the first building. It was on higher ground,
a far better location, and about the same distance from the
spring, which was to the north. It was built of large logs in
octagonal shape, or rather it had eight corners, and seems to
have been quite a roomy house. It was surrounded by large
trees, some of which are still standing.
The forest at that time was composed of large trees, stand-
ing at considerable distance from each other, and the wild
pea-viue, which grew luxuriantly, instead of the undergrowth
which we now have.
Around one of these trees near to the church it was the
custom of the congregation to stack their guns during the
service, while a sentinel kept watch over them, and gave the
alarm in case of the approach.of Indians.
On one occasion at this church the alarm was given, and
quite a number of red men were seen to approach within a
short distance from the church and suddenly halt. The
minister, who must have bapn the Rev. John DeBow, abrupt-
ly closed the services, and lit a pipe of tobacco, and smoked
as he walked forth amid the confused and frightened congre-
gation to meet the Indians. The pipe was offered to the
chief of the clan, who received it and smoked, and then re-
turned it to the minister. They immediately departed, having
understood this token as an emblem of peace. I have heard
this story through a great-uncle of mine, Isaac Craig, whose
mother, the wife of James Craig, was present on that occa-
22 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Perhaps the first preacher who had anything like a regular
appointment at New Hope church was the Rev. John Debow.
He succeeded the Rev. Henry Patillo as pastor of Hawfields
and Eno churches, and ministered to the people of New Hope
as time and opportunity would permtt. He was a young
man of considerable talent, and came to his field of labor
about the year 1775. He died Sept. 8, 1783, at the age of
thirty-eight, and was buried at Hawfields church. I have
seen his grave, and have been informed that he was the first
person buried at the present Hawfields churchyard.
The next minister of New Hope was the Rev. Jacob Lake,
who succeeded Mr. Debow, serving the churches in the same
way until he left in the year 1790. He left the Presbytery in
the year 1794, having been connected with it about ten years.
The next minister was the famous William F. Thompson,
the first pastor of the church. This man was ordained at New
Hope, and was doubtless installed pastor at the same time.
It is worthy of note that the first recorded meeting of
Orange Presbytery now in existence is dated Nov. 18, 1795,
and they met at New Hope church. This was the first meet-
ing after Concord had been set off as a new Presbytery, and
as I have already stated, all the recorded proceedings of the
Presbytery before this were burned with the records of New
Hope church. But according to this first record of the Pres-
bytery now in existence, at this meeting at New Hope, the
Rev. James Bowman was made moderator. William F.
Thompson and William McGee were ordained, and John
Gillispie was licensed. Robert Foster and Robert Tate were
examined as candidates on parts of their trial. Robert Tate
was an uncle of my grandfather, Samuel Strayhorn, and
became one of the pioneer Presbyterian ministers in the
eastern part of the state.
Mr. Thompson, according to my information, was a native
of Connecticut, and continued to be pastor of New Hope
church until Nov. 12, 1799, when he resigned his charge at a
pro re-nata meeting of the Presbytery held at Cross Roads
church. He left the bounds of the Presbytery, and in April,
1802, he was suspended from the ministry for false charges
THE FIRST MINISTERS. 23
made against the Presbytery. He was a shrewd man, and
during his ministry at New Hope he aroused the people to
give more attention to schools, and from that time through
many years afterwards a school was generally kept up at the
It was soon after Mr. Lake's departure that Gilbert Stray-
horn, who was now an old man, made a deed of gift " to the
subscribers of the church and their successors " of two hun-
dred acres of land. This deed was signed and sealed by
Gilbert Stray horn the 25th day of Feb., 1792. At the insti-
gation of Mr. Thompson a parsonage was built at the place
where William 0, Claytor now lives, and a large portion of
the aforesaid two hundred acres of land was laid off as a
farm to be attached to the parsonage. But at the departure
of Mr. Thompson this land, in some way, passed out of the
hands of the church, and also another portion, after his de-
parture, went in the same way, leavimg only seventy acres of
the original tract belonging to the church. There has been a
great deal said about these transactions, and a great many
conflicting statements have been made. On the one hand, it
has been claimed that the instrument of wiiting which Mr.
Thompson drew up as a mere statement of the boundaries of
the pastor's farm, and which the elders unwittingly signed,
proved to be a bona-fide deed to him, and that he sold the
land on leaving the congregation. On the other hand, it has
been claimed that the elders of their own free will sold the land,
and perhaps appropriated the money towards the building of
the third church, or in settling arrears with Mr. Tnompson.
Since writing the first edition of this pamphlet, I have seen
the old deeds, which will forever set the matter at rest as to
who sold the lands, but the question of right or wrong in the
matter still remains
On the twentieth day of Sept., 1799, the Rev. William F.
Thompson made a deed to John Strayhorn, eon of Gilbert,
for one hundred acres of land, more or less. 1 have seen this
deed, and never in my life have I seen a more perfect and
beautiful work of penmanship. In it Mr. Thompson says.
" Said lands were conveyed and made over to me by bim, said
24 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Gilbert Strayhorn, etc."' Upon this statement alone it is evi-
dent that the whole transaction was a fraud, and yet there
are some strange facts connected with it.
It will now be remembered that Gilbert Strayhorn made a
deed of these said lands to " the subscribers of New Hope
church, and to their successors forever," on the 25th day of
Feb., 1792. This was three years before Thompson came to
New Hope, for he was ordained and became pastor in Nov.,
1795, and he left in 1799 — the year in which he sold the land.
Now the question is, what right had Gilbert Strayhorn to
make a deed to Mr. Toompson, — or who will suppose that he
did do so — after having already deeded the lands three or four
years previous to the church ?
Mr. Thompson says, " conveyed to me by him, per deed
etc." It is a standing fact that no such "per deed, etc," has
ever been seen or recorded.
One of the strange things connected with the matter, is the
fact that Gilbert Strayhorn was still living in 1799, and we
would naturally expect that he would have exposed the fraud;
but he was in the decripitude of old age and incapicitated for
business and perhaps knew nothing of the transaction, and
the presumption is that the congregation neither knew nor
cared concerning fhe matter, and so it passed away without
special notice. And as to John Strayhorn the purchaser,
who was a son of Gilbert, it would seem that he would have
known better and prevented any fraud, but some one
has said, " he may have wanted the land very bad." I am
confident the deed was a forgery.
The other portion of land, seventeen acres, in the south-
west corner of the tract, was sold by the elders and subscribers
of New Hope church, — "after mature deliberation and con-
sultation," for church repairs, on the 17th day of May, 1817.
This was an honest transaction, but I am of decided opinion
that they had no right to do so, according to the deed of 1792.
It was sold to Samuel Strayhorn, a son of John, who now
owned the Thompson tract. The deed was signed by ruling
elders James Hart, John Freeland, James Strayhorn, John
Strain and Alexander Strain; and by subscribers William
THE FIRST MINISTERS. 2">
Strayhorn, John Strayborn, David Strayborn, Alexander
Gattis, George Johnston and Andrew Burns.
The wrorjg that may have been perpetrated is a matter to
be regretted, but it is sheer folly for anyone at this day and
time to think of attempting the resurrection of those transac-
tions. For whether it was right or wrong, or in accordance
with the intentions of the donor or not, the right of
possession has long since confirmed these transactions.
The agitation of the question of reclaiming these lands
can never amount to a row of pins towards accomplishing that
end, and will be productive of no good, but great harm, and
therefore ought to be sedulously avoided. And in view of
the past, it is some consolation to believe that the remaining
seventy acres, upon which all of the churches have stood,
will never pass out of the hands of the congregation.
The next minister who served the church in the second house
of worship was the Rev. James H. Bowman. From the
Presbyterial records I learn that in the year 1799 his charge
was Eno and Little River. In the yeai 1800 he was sent as
a missionary to the west, and returned in the fall of 1801, and
perhaps came to New Hope in the year 1802. He was wholly
different from Thompson in many respects. He seems to
have been deeply pious, of considerable learning, and much
engaged in teaching school in connection with tiis preaching.
If I have been rightly informed he taught school at New
Hope during his ministry as stated supply to the church.
My grandfather, and others whom I have known, reim mbered
him well, and his preaching. His ministry closed, or rather
he left the Presbytery, in the year 1815. He was perhaps
the first man who preached in the third house of worship,
and he seems to have been greatly beloved by the people, and
spent much of his time in pastoral visiting among them.
I am not aware of the causes which about this time led to
the building of a third church. Perhaps the old one was
dilapidated from age, or it may be that the advanced ideas
and tastes of the congregation demanded a new church. In
the year 1800 there was a great revival at New Hope and the
people came from great distances and camped for days on the
26 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
ground. They preached and prayed and sung and shouted,
and the spirit of the revival spread far and wide into other
neighborhoods. It was perhaps the fruits of this revival
which largely prompted the building of a new church.
THE THIRD BUILDING,
AND MINISTERS WHO PREACHED IN IT.
This house was located about two hundred yards to the
south-east from the second. The situation was still more
desirable than the second, and the spring, which was here-
tofore on the north, was now deserted for an elegant one on
the south, which bubbles out of a solid rock. This third
church was built in the year 1805, and destroyed by fire on
the night of March the 9th, 1862. The origin of the fire
which destroyed it has always been a matter of conjecture,
but most generally believed to have been the work of an
incendiary. It occurred on Saturday night, and I well re-
member the peculiar and almost comical expression on the
face of the Rev. Dr. James Phillips, when he walked up
and stood around the smouldering ruins on Sabbath morn-
ing. But the want of a house did not prevent the beloved
old doctor from preaching the gospel that day. The people
assembled under the trees and quietly listened to a most
excellent sermon from the 119th Psalm and 101st verse.
The last sermon preached in this house was by the Rev.
Dr. Charles Phillips on a public " fast day," February 28th,
1862, the text, from "The wages of sin is death." In many res-
pects it was not so good a house as the present one, but answered
all the purposes for more than fifty years. The pulpit was in the
west end which was a high structure with several steps
ascending up into it, and which elevated the preacher much
above the people. There was a gallery attachment at the
east end for the accommodation of the colored people, and
under this gallery was a door of entrance, but the chief door
was on the south side.
THE THIRD BUILDING. — MINISTERS. 27
In this house, after Mr. Bowman had left, and about the
year 1815, the Eev. Eobert H. Chapman berved the people
as stated supply.
The Kev. Elijah Graves succeeded him, and preached
from November, 1818, until April 1820. He was a great
temperance reformer, ana many signed a pledge under his
The Eev. Dr. John Witherspoon frequently preached at
New Hope about this time, and occasionally during a number
of years after this date.
These brethren were located at Hillsboro, and engaged in
teaching in connection with the church there, and they sup-
plied New Hope as time and opportunity would permit.
We have now reached a point in the history of the church
from which we- can be more accurate in dates and names, for
henceforth there is a full record of all the proceedings of the
The first minute recorded in the oldest session book is as
" New Hope ChuRCH,
"April 22, 1820.
"Session met. Present: Kev. S. K. Kollock, Mod.: James
Strayhorn, John Strain, James Hart, John Freeland.
" Kev. Mr. Witherspoon being present was invited to take a
seat as a member of the session.
k 'Mr. Kollock laid before the session the resolution of the
Presbytery 'recommending all the churches under their care
that had been vacant for some time to be re-organized and
newly regulated.' It seemed upon inquiry that there was
no record of the members of the church, and that owing to
the want of stated preaching but little discipline had
hitherto been exercised. Therefore,
" Kesolved, That on to-morrow the church be re-organized
and the members be admitted by a public assent to the
articles of faith and covenant, to walk as disciples of Christ. "
28 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
On the next day it appears that the following came for-
ward and assented to the covenant: —
Ruling Elders — John Strain, James Hart, James Stray-
horn and John Freeland. Members — Alex Gattis, Samuel
Faucett, Rebecca Craig, Sr., Rebecca Craig, Jr., Penelope
Strayhorn, Elizabeth Currie, Jane Freeland, Elizabeth
Davis, Margaret Craig and Elizabeth Faucett.
Aaron Hunter and Jane McCauley seem to have been
members, but were not present on that day.
It appears from the above minutes the Rev. Mr. Kollock
was at this time pastor, though there is no mention made of
his installation. His home was in Hillsboro and he preached
at New Hope in connection with the Hillsboro church until
1825, when we find the following note in the minutes: — ■
"In May, 1825, the connection between Mr. Kollock and
the New Hope congregation was dissolved. He was suc-
ceeded by the Rev. Elijah Graves as stated supply."
Mr. Graves began to preach at New Hope the second
time in November, 1825, and continued to be the regular
minister until May, 1831, when the co-laborers, Rev. Dan-
iel L. Russell and Rev. John S. McCutcheon began their
These brethren were missionaries or evangelists, and
unitedly preached at New Hope from November, 1831, until
They were immediately followed by the Rev. Phillip
Pearson, who remained until October of the same year.
It was during this time — from November, 1831, until
November, 1832, — that the church enjoyed a great and
gracious revival of religion under the ministration of these
three brethren. Numerous and substantial tents were built
upon the grounds, and the people came from all quarters,
and lived in them for weeks at a time in order to attend the
meetings The record shows that there were at least seventy
persons admitted to the communion about this time, and
Dr. John Witherspoon seems to have been present at most of
the sessional meetings.
The next regular stated minister after Mr. Graves was
THE THIRD BUILDING. — MINISTERS. 29
the Rev. George W. Ferrill. He was unanimously elected
pastor March, 23, 1833, and was installed soon after. He con-
tinued to preach at New Hope until July, 1836, when the
pastoral relation was dissolved. He is still living at his
home in Granville county, but is very old and infirm, and has
long since ceased to attend the church courts.
He was succeeded by the Eev. Dr. James Phillips, who
began to preach at New Hope as stated supply in August,
1836, and he continued to serve the chuich in this relation
until December, 1865. He served the church a longer period
than any other one man, and was greatly beloved by the
congregation. When he ceased to preach at New Hope —
about thirty years having passed away — the congregation
was in a great measure a new generation from that which
was present when he began his labors there. His life and
history as a professor in the University of North Carolina, as
well as a preacher of the gospel, are well known, not only in
this State, but throughout the South. For a long time dur-
ing the early history of Chapel Hill there was no Presbyte-
rian church in the village, consequently the people of New
Hope enjoyed the preachiDg of this pious and learned man
almost every Sabbath for quite a number of years. He was
a pure Englishman, and never failed to betray it by his pe-
culiar brogue. His name and memory are still precious in
the congregation — especially with those who knew him best.
Eis son, the Kev. Dr. Charles Phillips, united with the
church at New Hope March 27.1842, and in after years, when
he became a minister, often preached there in connection
with his father. He was ordained at New Hope in 1866. He
was one of the brainest men that North Carolina ever pro-
duced. His life work was teaching and yet, he was a most
powerful preacher — big hearted and had the symplicity of a
child in his manner and illustrations.
The Hon. David L. Swain also first united with the church
at New Hope, and both he and Dr. Charles Phillips were
dismissed by certificate to join the church at Chapel Hill
October 26th, 1845.
As before stated, it was on Sunday morning of March 10th,
30 , HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
1862, when Dr. Phillips and the congregation came together
to find the old church a smouldering heap of ruins. At that
time the civil war was the all absorbing theme, and the
hearts of the people were filled with sadness — both on account
of the desolation upon the battle-fields and the destruction
of their cherished old landmark — the church of their fathers.
This house had stood in tact since the year 1805, but it was
now a thing of the past. But the people were not discouraged
and took immediate steps towards building a new church.
In the meantime a large arbor was erected on the grounds,
under which the people worshipped during the summer of
THE FOUBTH BUILDING.
This house stands about twenty steps to the northwest
from the site where the third was burDt. It is a very neat
and comfortable country church, and capable of seating an
ordinarily large congregation. It was built in war times
with Confederate money, when it required a large amount of
money to pay for a small amount of work. David Craig, a
ruling elder, who still lives, was an active mover and the
chief manager in its erection. Within the last year it has
been painted, and its appearance much improved. This house
forms a water shed between the streams of Eno and New
Hope, or the Neuse and Cape Fear rivers.
The Kev. Dr. James Phillips preached the first sermon
in this house to a large congregation on Sunday, the 25th of
October, 1863, from the text, Isaiah 35:8.
After Dr. Phillips ceased to serve the church — in 1865 — the
Bev. Thomas Lynch became stated supply, and served the
church from February, 1886, until the winter of 1867.
THE FOUKTH BUILDING. — MINISTERS. 31
It was during this period that the Presbytery of Orange
last convened at New Hope— April 11th, 1866 — at which time
the Eev, Drs. Charles Phillips and Calvin H. Wiley were
After Mr. Linch the Eev. Henry B. Pratt, supplied the
church for the space of six months in connection with church
at Hillboro. He was a foreign missionary, and spent most
of his life in South America. He began to preach in May
1868, and on the 24th day of said month and year the writer
of this sketch, together with John T. Hogan, Caroline Stray-
horn, Elizabeth and Isabel Kirkland, were received and
baptised as members of the church. And the first sermon I
ever preached in this church was from 2 Cor. 5:20, May 20th,
After Mr. Pratt the church was supplied during a part of
1859 and '70 by the Eev. A. Kirkland.
In 1870 the Eev. T. U. Faucett became stated supply, and
served the church until the fall of 1872.
The Eev. C. N. Morrow preached for a short while in 1873
and Eev. J. L. Currie a short while in the year 1874.
In August 1874, the Eev. P. H. Dalton became stated
supply, and served the church in this relation until January
6th, 1884, when he was installed pastor. In February 1786, he
offered his resignation of the pastoral charge, which was not
accepted by the great majority of the congregation, and he
still continued to be pastor of the church until December,
1886, when the pastoral relation was dissolved. Mr. Dalton
united with the church at New Hope while a student at
Chapel Hill, September the 4th, 1842, and his membership
has never been removed, During his ministry at New Hope
for the past twelve years, according to his own statement,
there have been at least fifty additions to the membership,
the congregation having largely increased, and several
families have been brought in which had no connection with
the church. In closing a recent lettle to the writer he says,
"I have worked hard, and under unfavorable circumstancas,
but God has blessed my labors."
Before the departure of Mr. Dalton there arose trouble in
32 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
the church which seemed to be chiefly confined to the session.
They could not agree touching many points, and did not act
harmoniously among themselves. The church remained
vacant about one year, during which time the Presbytery
sent a commission to the church which apparently settled all
In March, 1887, Rev. James L. Currie was installed pastor,
which relation existed until November, 1889, when it was
During this short pastorate fresh troubles arose which
involved certain members of the church and session. A case
growing out of the settlement of an estate by a member of
the congregation, and which properly belonged to the civil
courts, was allowed to come before the session. This case
was finally adjudicated by an adjourned meeting of the Pres-
bytery, March 5th, 1889, and the result only widened the
breach in the session and intensified a spirit of bitterness on
the part of certain members.
Whereupon a private member of the church, Mr. David A.
Claytor, originated and executed a petition signed by a large
majority of the church, asking the entire bench of active
elders to resign, namely: Messrs. John T. Hogan, Chas. W.
Johnston, William C. Claytor, Samuel D. Blackwood, Samuel
Kirkland and Leroy Craig.
Ruling elder David Craig, who is now an old man and
infirm, and who enjoys the confidence, love and esteem of the
entire church, was not included in this petition.
The three first named elders expressed their willingness to
resign, the three last named refused.
The petition was then sent up to the Presbytery. The
Presbytery met at the church in an adj ourned meeting May
16, 1889; after hearing all the parties, dissolved the relation as
elders between all the aforesaid six brethren and the church,
and ordered a new election.
The election was held May 25th, 1889, and was presided
over by the Rev. P. H. Johnston, D. D. Messrs. Chas. W.
Johnston, John T. Hogan and Wm. C. Claytor were
re-elected — a majority of the ballots cast determining the
MINISTERS. — DATE OF THEIR LABORS. 33
number elected, as well as the men chosen. These brethren
were re-installed in the presence of a large congregation.
Another adjourned meeting of the presbytery was held at
the church in the summer of 1890, in order, if possible to
reclaim certain disaffected and absenting members.
The next pastor called to New Hope church in connection
with Chapel Hill, was Eev. James E. Fogartie, who was
installed Nov. 30, 1890. About this time Eev. Dr. W. D
Morton and Eev. Mr. Maxwell, synodical evangelists, con-
ducted a meeting at New Hope with blessed results. Quite
a number have been added to the church, and Mr. Fogartie,
the new pastor, has already won the hearts of the people.
It is to be devoutly hoped that the church in the future,
"forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching
forth unto those things which are before, will press
toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in
Christ Jesus,' 1 and go on to grow, and to prosper, and to con-
quer, through him who, "loved the church and gave himself
THE NAMES OF THE MINISTEES OF THE
AND THE DATE OF THEIR LABORS.
Eev. Henry Patillo, Organizer, - - About 1765
Eev. John Debow, Stated Supply, - 1775
Eev. Jacob Lake, Stated Supply, - - - 1785
Eev. Wm. M. Thompson, Pastor, - - - 1795
Eev. James H. Bowman, Stated Supply, . - 1802
Eev. Robert H. Chapman, Stated Supply, - - 1815
Eev. Elijah Graves, Stated Supply, - - - 1817
Eev. Shepherd K. Kollock, Pastor, - 1820
34 HISTOEY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Eev. Elijah Graves, Stated Snpply, - - - 1S25
Rev. Daniel L. Russell, Evangelist, - 1831
Rev. John S. McCutcheon, Evangelist, - - - 1831
Rev. Philip Pearson, Evangelist, - 1832
Rev. George W. Ferrill, Pastor, .... 1833
Rev. James Phillips, D. D., Stated Supply, - - 1836
Rev. Thomas Lynch, Stated Supply, - - - 1866
Rev. Henry B. Pratt, Stated Supply, - - - 1868
Rev. Alexander Kirkland, Slated Supply, - - 1869
Rev Thomas U. Faucett, Stated Supply, - - 1870
Rev. Calvin N. Morrow, Stated Supply, - - - 1873
Rev. James L. Currie, Stated Supply, - - - 1874
Rev. Pleasant H. Dalton, Stated Supply, - - 1874
Rev. Pleasant H. Dalton, Pastor, - 1884
Rev. James L. Currie, Prstor, - 1887
Rev. James E. Fogartie, Pastor, - 1890
THE RULING ELDERS OF THE CHURCH.
FROM this point forward in the history of New Hope
church the writer desires to call especial attention. If we
lose the line of our ancestry we olten lose sight of the re-
peated fulfilment of the promises of God to His people. This
is an important matter, and should be impressed upon the
minds of our children and our children's children. For be it
remembered " Oar God is a covenant-keeping God.'' His
promise is unto His children and to their seed forever. And
"He is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count
slackness. This thought is beautifully expressed by Wil-
liam N. Patterson, a great-grandson of Gilbert Stray horn,
who in a recent letter to the writer says, "The divine inspi-
rations as taught and enjoyed by the founders of old New
Hope church can never be lost to their descendants. Family
RULING ELDERS OF THE CHURCH. 35
connections and other causes may for a time draw them from
the worship of their fathers, but intuitively we see them away
down along the course of time moving into line again." Let
this be noted as we trace the eldership and the families of
New Hope church in connection with Gilbert Stray horn and
John Craig, the original founders of the church.
From the time the church was organized — most probably
by Henry Patillo, and about 1765, — until the year 1795 the
following persons were known to have been elders: Gilbert
Strayhorn, John Oraig, John Mitchell, Robert Baker, Mr.
Gill, Alexander Strain and James Hart. There may have
been others whose names I have never learned, but these
were elders during the first thirty years of the church's his-
tory. And of these Messrs. Mitchell, Baker and Gill have
left no representatives. The Mitchells were connected with
the Faucetts, and the latter family was three times afterwards
represented in the session, but this family also has ceased to
be found in the congregation.
About the year 1795 the following three persons were or-
dained and installed elders, and they — with James Hart- —
constituted the entire session at the re-organization of the
church in April, 1820. They were James Strayhorn, John
Strain and John Freeland.
Gilbert Strayhorn and John Craig were now dead — the
former having died Feb. 6, 1803, and the latter Feb. 19, 1816.
The one was 88 years old and the other was about 90. It
will now be noticed that the above named James Strayhorn
was a son of Gilbert. James Hart married his daughter,
Nancy; John Strain was his nephew and married his daugh-
ter, Miriam, and John Freeland was in some way closely
connected with John Craig.
From the minutes of Orange Presbytery I learn that
John Craig attended the Presbytery at Hawfields in April,
1796; John Freeland at Buffalo church in September, 1796;
John Straiu at Ptaftswamp church in March, 1797; Mr. Stray-
horn at Hawfields in October, 1797. I cannot tell whether
this was the father or son, as the christian name is not given.
James Hart attended at Alamance church in September, 1798,
36 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
and John Mitchell at Eno church in March, 1799. From
these facts it is evident that the four above mentioned elders,
who were present at the re-organization of the church in 1820,
were ordained about the year 1795.
The next ordination occurred Oct. 15, 1820, when the
following three persons were added to the session: Alex-
ander Gattis, Samuel Faucett and Gilbert Strayhorn. The
latter was a grandson of Gilbert, the old elder, and a son of
The next ordination occurred Feb. 1, 1832, when tbe fol-
lowing five persons were added to the session: William Brown,
Alexander Strain, Samuel Hart, David Hart and Allen Petty.
Again it will be noticed that two of these — the two Harts —
were the grandsons of Gilbert Strayhorn. Mr. Strain was a
son of Alexander. Of the other two there is neither name
nor representative in the congregation at the present time.
In May, 1836, John R, Faucett was received and installed
an elder from the Cross Roads church.
The next ordination occurred May 9, 1840, when the fol-
lowing four persons were added to the session: George A.
Faucett, David Craig, William C. Blackwood, and Joseph
Kirkland. And again it will be noticed that David Craig
is a grandson of John Craig and a great-grandson of Gil-
bert Strayhorn. And all of these four, except Mr. Faucett,
were the great-grandsons of William Craige, and Joseph
Kirkland was the father of the present Rev. A. Kirkland.
In September, 1859, the following five persons were or-
dained and installed elders: Samuel S. Claytor, Alexander
Dickson, William S. Kirkland, Bryant Strayhorn and George
R. Long. We will note again the connection with the old
elders: Bryant Strayhorn was a grandson of Gilbert, and his
wife, Mary Strain, was a granddaughter. Mr. Kirkland was
a great-grandson of William Craige, and married a great-
granddaughter of Gilbert Strayhorn. Mr. Long was a grand-
son of a grandson of John Craig. Mr. Claytor was in some
way connected with the Strayhorns through the Cabes.
In June, 1871, John T. Hogan and Samuel D. Blackwood
were ordained and added to the bench of elders. Here again
RULING ELDERS OF THE CHURCH. 37
Mr. Hogan is a direct descendant of the old elder, John
Freeland, and married a great-granddaughter of Gilbert
Strayhorn. Mr. Blackwood is a grandson of a daughter of
John Craig, and married not only a great-granddaughter of
John Craig, but a granddaughter of the grandchildren of
Gilbert Strayhorn in direct line from both her father and
The next ordination occurred July 8, 1877, when William
C. Claytor, Nettleton G. Craig and Charles W. Johnston
Were made elders. Mr. Claytor is a son of the elder ordained
in 1859. Mr. Craig was " a choice young man" — born Jan.
16, 1849, and died May 2, 1879, — and a great-grandson of
John Craig, and a great-great-grandson of Gilbert Strayhorn
in direct line from both his father and mother. And Mr.
Johnston is a grandson of Gilbert St ray horn's daughter,
Mary, who married John Cabe.
The next and last ordination of elders at New Hope oc-
curred July 17, 1879, when Samuel Kirkland and Leroy
Craig were added to the session. Mr. Kirkland is a great-
grandson of William Craige, and his wife is a granddaughter
of John Craig and a great-granddaughter of Gilbert Stray-
horn. Mr Craig stands in the same relation to John Craig
and Gilbert Strayhorn as that described above in the case of
Nettleton G. Craig.
Thus ends the long list of elders who have officiated in the
affairs of New Hope church, and I hope I will be pardoned if
1 here record my own name, David Irvin Craig, — a great-
great-grandson of both William Craige and Gilbert Stray-
horn. I was born Feb. 11, 1849; studied at Davidson Col-
lege, and graduated at Columbia Theological Seminary, S. C,
May 8, 1878, was licensed to preach the gospel at Greensboro,
N. C, May 31, 1878, and was ordained and installed pastor at
Reidsville, N. C, June 1, 1879, where I still abide.
I have already called attention to the fact that the Rev.
Robert Tate was a grandson of Gilbert Strayhorn.
The Rev. G. A. Russell, of Term., and the Rev. Andrew
Craige were both grandsons of John Craig, and the Rev.
Alexander Blackwood and Rev. Alexander Kirkland both
db HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
sprang from New Hope church, also Rev. Braxton Craig, a
Baptist minister, and Eev. Newell Strayhorn, a Cumberland
Presbyterian minister in Austin, Texas. I have also been
reliably informed that there are ten or a dozen Cumberland
Presbyterian ministers in the west who can trace their origin
to old New Hope church.
Thus let it be carefully noted that nearly all of these min-
isters and elders are either the direct descendants, or are in
some way closely connected with the original founders of the
church, therefore clearly illustrating the truth of God's
promises to them that keep His covenant. And the same
will be equally apparent if we have the time and patience to
enter into the large field of family connections and their rela-
tions to the church.
NAMES OF THE ELDERS OE THE CHURCH,
AND THE TIME OF THEIR ORDINATION.
Gilbert Strayhorn, : About 1765
John Craig, :
The above named persons were the elders through the first
thirty years of the church's existence.
James Strayhorn, : : 1795
John Strain, : : : :
John Ereeland, : : :
THE NEW GRAVEYARD.
Alexander Gattis, :
Samuel Faucett, :
Gilbert Strayhorn, :
William Brown, :
Alexander Strain, :
Samuel Hart, : :
David Hart, : :
Allen Petty, : :
John E. Faucett, :
George A. Faucett, :
David Craig, : :
William C. Blackwood,
Joseph Kirkland, :
Samuel C. Claytor, :
William S. Kirkland,
George B. Long, :
John T. Hogan, : :
Samuel D. Blackwood,
William C. Claytor, :
Nettleton G. Craig,
Charles W. Johnston,
Samuel Kirkland, :
Leroy Craig, : :
THE NEW GRAVEYARD.
The old graveyard near the site of the first churcb was
badly located, the ground being too low and forming almost
a basin, and in the winter season it was almost impossible to
bury the dead in a dry tomb. Great dissatisfaction existed
in the minds of many persons as they saw their loved ones
40 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
thus laid away. It was in December, 1859, when a little
infant brother of mine was buried there under just such cir-
cumstances. My father, James Newton Craig, was greatly
troubled and dissatisfied, and determined that he would re-
move the remains at some future day. It was never done,
however, until he died Feb. 11, 1879, when the remains were
transferred to the new graveyard and deposited by his side.
But when he had a second child to die he determined to seek
a new and dry place where he might lay its body. And
accordingly, in company with ruling elder David Craig, he
selected a spot in the present graveyard, where his little son,
Vernon, nine months old, was buried the 1st day of January,
1869. This was the first grave, and the origin of the present
burying ground at New Hope church, where scores have since
been buried. It is a dry and beautiful location, looking to
the sunrise, and a little south of east from the church, and
will, no doubt, receive the mortal remains of generations to
NEW HOPE SOLDIEKS
IN THE WAR BETWEEN THE STATES. — DEATH ROLL.
The following persons lived within the bounds of New
Hope congregation, and gave their lives to the "Lost Cause "
Samuel A. Craig, William H. Craig, Joseph A. Craig, Thomas
J. Stray horn, George Stray horn, Samuel Stray horn, AVilliam
H, Strayhorn, Egbert Strayhorn, Greene Strayhorn, Wiley
Strayhorn, Archibald Strayhorn, John Kirkland, Alexander
Baldwin, Jackson Borland, William Borland, Wilton B. Bob-
son, Orin A. Watson, Bartlett Bishop, William J. Long,
William G. Latta, Jordan Williams, Henry Gilliam, Wisely
Barton, Maurice Sharp, William Crabtree, Leonard Crabtree.
Munroe Crabtree, William B-hodes, John Neal, Thomas
Sykes, Kein Sykes. John Howard, William Thompson, Mun-
voe Thompson. Samuel Thompson.
FAMILY HI8T0EY. 41
In endeavoring to give a brief account of the sons and
daughters of some of these fathers of the church my effort
must necessarily be very imperfect. I therefore ask the for-
bearance of my friends, and hope at some future day to see
the work corrected and arranged in better form.
THE STKAYHORN FAMILY.
The number of Gilbert Strayhorn's children, their names
and places of residence have already been stated.
was his eldest child, and just here I may call attention to a
note in the old session book. It states that John Stray horn,
the son of Gilbert, who died in 1826, aged 84, was a native of
Pennsylvania and a member of the church before coming to
North Carolina. It has been stated by William Burns, a
grandson of old William Burns, and who was an old man
when he died, that this John Strayhorn was a bound boy or
young man in the service of William Barns, and that he came
to North Carolina in company with him from Pennsylvania.
It has also been said that he was a younger brother of Gil-
bert Strayhorn, and that their father's name in Pennsylvania
was Gilbert. If this be true it is natural to suppose that the
name of " Strayhorn " was adopted by him along with his
brother. He seems never to have had a family and died a
good man. It was owing to the existence of this man that I
mentioned a probable third son in the original family in
Pennsylvania, on page 7.
The John Strayhorn before us now, the son of Gilbert the
father of the name, was born in the Hawfields in 1742, and
afterwards was mairied there to Elizabeth Johnston, by
whom he had twelve children.
42 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Some interesting stories are told by Mr. John A. Freeland
concerning this man, whom he well remembers. It seems he
was a revolutionary soldier, and had chai'ge of the rear wagon
in Morgan's retreat after the battle of the Cowpens. The
wagon was loaded with prisoners and plunder, and as he was
crossing a swimming stream, one wheel struck a floating log,
and he gave a sorrel mare a lick with the whip, when she
went to the bottom and pulled the wagon over. Cannons on
both sides of the river were in readiness to fire until he
Again, he was stationed on a hill on the south side of Eno
river, opposite Hillsboro, when Lord Cornwallis took that
" whig capital," capturing the Governor and routing the un-
fortunate forty-two whigs who were at the public spring
getting ready to fight. There Thomas Freeland fell, shot
through the head by a tory. The grandfather of Mr. Free-
land, coming from Haw river, dug a hole and buried him.
He does not say which grandfather, Mr. Strain or the old
Elder John Freeland. His grave is on the hill near Kirk-
land's old tan yard. The British and Tories in high glee left
the dead to bury the dead, and searched the country, bringing
in whigs before Lord Cornwallis, who sat in Cain's old store
as judge and jury until the old jail was full.
Another story Mr. Freeland relates as told to him by this
man, John Strajdiorn, is as follows: — Captain Young, of
Hillsboro, collected about one hundred whigs and went to
fight Dick Edwards on Cane Creek. The whigs were on a
road leading to a large hill, where the road forked. The
tories had news of their approach, and had collected about
three hundred men and were lying in ambush on one of the
forks of the road going around the hill. But finding that the
whigs had taken the other fork, they ran around and overtook
three men who were behind, and killed them. Here the
fight began, and Captain Young was killed and Alexander
Geddes, the old elder of New Hope church in after years,
was wounded. Then Mr. Strayhorn said, " I looked through
the sight of my rifle at their captain and fired, and he fell !
FAMILY HISTORY. 43
The fight was soon ended and we returned with our brave
dead." As Mr. Freeland truly remarks, " What was the his-
tory of one was the history of nearly all of New Hope's men,
— fighting for American liberty and against a State Church,
which was then the Church of England."
His children were as follows:
Charles, who married Mary Piper, and some of whose
descendants are to be found in Durham county.
Jane, who married Alexander Craig, the father of David
Craig, who is now the oldest elder in the church and the
father of elder Nettleton Craig, deceased, and of Samuel and
William, who died in the civil war.
Nancy, who married Joseph Freeland.
Gilbert, who married Jane Kirkland.
William, who married Nancy Strain.
Samuel, who married Sarah Hart; these were the parents
of Mrs. William S. Kirkland.
George, who married Mary Brassfield.
Abner accidentally hung himself while a boy.
Martha, who married Sampson Moore, whose children
were John, Thomas, Mrs. Chesley Patterson, Mrs. Dr.
Rhodes, Mrs. Reed, Mrs. Leroy Stray horn, etc.
Bryant, who married Mary Strain, whose sons all died in
the war, — George, Samuel and Hooper.
David, who married Annie Freeland, and was the father
of John, who married Eliza Cole, and of Thomas, who fell in
the battle of Stone River, Tenn. John is the father of Caro-
line, who is the wife of Milton Craig.
Mary, who married Robert Davis, and some of whose
children were Silas, Mrs. Henry Turner and Mrs Bruce.
the second son, married two wives, Mary Tate and Mary
Hunter. By Mary Tate he had three children, as follows: —
Nancy, who married Elisha Smith, whose children were
Mrs. Anderson Tate and William, who married Everline
Samuel, who married Mary Moore, and who was the
44 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
father of William F. Strayhorn, the father of Isaac, Thomas
and Mrs. Berry; Mrs David Craig, Mrs. Newton Craig, my
mother, and Thomas, who fell in the battle of Ream's Station.
Gilbert committed suicide.
By Mary Hunter he had seven children, as follows: —
Sarah, who married Samuel Tate, of the Hawfields, the
father of Lemuel, Thomas, William, Pinkney, Mary, Mrs.
Johnston, Mrs. Dickson, Mrs. Latta and Mrs. Freeland.
John never married.
William, who married Nancy Faucett, and their three
daughters married William Tate, Gilbert Craig and George
Miriam never married.
David, who married Sarah Tate, and their children were
Mary, Newell, Arabella, Yancey, etc. Newell is a Cumber-
land Presbyterian minister in Austin, Texas.
Mary, who married Thomas Tate; unknown to me.
Aaron, who married Nancy Patterson, whose children
were William, Mary, Sarah, etc.
the third son, married Rachael Cabe, by whom he had five
children, as follows: —
William, who married Nancy Thompson, whose children
were Thompson, James, Rachael, etc.
John, who married Susan Borland, and who was the father
of Wiley, Greene, Egbert, Sidney and Malitha, who married
Alexander Borland. — These sons all died in the war, except
James, who married Mary Blackwood, and who was the
father of Calvin, Robert, Maggie, and Julia, who married
John T. Hogan.
Elizabeth never married.
Mary, who married Archibald Borland, the father of
William, their only child.
the fourth son, married two wives, a Miss Cabe and Penny
Berry. By Miss Cabe he had two children, as follows: —
FAMILY HISTORY. 45
Gilbert, who married Sarah Borland, and who was the
father of David and William.
John, who is unknown to me.
By Penny Berry his children were Samuel, Alfred, Eliza,
etc., who all moved to Tennessee.
the eldest daughter of Gilbert Stray horn, married James
Hart, and had eleven children, as follows : —
Jane, who married David Strain, and their children were
John, William, Mrs. Samuel C. Kirkland, Mrs. James Hart,
Mrs. John Horton, etc.
John, who married Fannie Moore.
Gilbert, who married Nancy Moore.
Sarah, who married Samuel Strayhorn.
James, who married a Miss Belden.
Elizabeth, who married Andrew Murray.
Samuel, who married Elizabeth Tate.
Miriam, who married James Brown.
David, who married Elizabeth Petty.
William and Joseph never married.
the second daughter, married John Strain, and had nine
children, as follows : —
David, who married Jane Hart.
William, who married Nancy Strayhorn.
Alexander, who married Mary Burns.
Elizabeth, who married John Elkms,
Mary, who married Bryant Strayhorn.
James, who married Elizabeth Gattis.
Samuel, who married a Miss Brewer.
Gilbert and Sarah never married.
the third daughter, married John Cabe, who was a member
of the legislature in 1796, by whom she had nine children,
all daughters, as follows: —
Nancy, who married Joseph Latta and Maj. Donne 11.
46 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Sarah, who married John Latta.
Mary, who married Mann Patterson, the father of William
N. and Robert.
Kachael, who married M. McCown and H. Simms.
Katy, who married Benjamin Rodgers.
Elizabeth, who married Benjamin Rhodes.
Lydia, who married Charles W. Johnston, the father of the
present elder bearing the same name.
Margaret, who married John Caldwell.
Jane, who married William T. Shields.
Some of these families moved to the West, and it is a little
singular that each of the eleven men whom the nine daugh-
ters married all owned a merchant mill.
the fourth daughter, married William Ansley, and moved to
Thus it will be seen that Gilbert Strayhorn had a large
number of grandchildren; at least sixty are here recorded,
and most of them in turn married, and had families bearing
various names, and who are largely the people of New Hope
THE CRAIG FAMILY.
As in the case of Mr. Strayhorn, the number of William
Craige's children, their names aod places of residence have
already been stated.
was the eldest child, and married Mary Blackwood, the daugh-
ter of William Blackwood, by whom he had ten children, as
James, who married Nellie Turner, of the Hawfields, and
who was the father of John, James, Annie, etc., of Chapel
Hill. He was one of the donors of the University site at
Chapel Hill A story is told of his absent-mindedness. He
once rode horse back to New Hope church to preaching, and
when he reached home he was afoot. His wife asked him
FAMILY HISTORY. 47
where was his horse. He had forgotten it, and had never
once thought of it in all of his seven miles tramp. A negro was
sent after it and found it tied to a tree near the church.
His son John was a member of the legislature in 1812.
His son James graduated at Chapel Hill in 1816.
James F. who lives at the old homestead, and William H.
a lawyer in Ark., are two of his grandsons, being sons of John.
Betsy, who married Alexander Russell, and moved west.
Isabel, who married Geo. Long, and who was the great-
grandmother of the Long family.
David, who married Betsy Boroughs, and who was the
father of four daughters, who married William Brown, Mr.
Blackwood, Mr. Murdock and John Freeland, the father of
Johnston and Dr. Oharles.
Alexander, who married Jane Strayhorn, and who was
the father of Isabel, who married Caleb Wilson; of John,
who married Susan White; of Cameron, who married Harriet
Jacobs; of Mary, who married John Baldwin; of David,
who married Nancy Strayhorn, and who was the father of
Nettleton; of Martha, who married Samuel Kirkland; of Gil-
bert, who married Margaret Strayhorn, the mother of Leroy
Abram, who married Jane Murdock, and who was the
father of John, of the Hawfields, and of Andrew, who became
a Baptist minister in the eastern part of the State. Abram,
a son of John is at present an elder in the Hawfields church,
and Locke and Braxton, sons of Andrew, one a lawyer in
Asheville and the other a Baptist minister.
Mary, who married Charles Freeland, the father of Fletch-
er, Mrs. Katy Faucett, etc.
Samuel, Peggy and John died unmarried.
was perhaps the second child, and married Nellie Turner,
of the Hawfields, by whom he had eight children, as fol-
lows : —
Johnston, who married Martha Blackwood, and moved
AVilliam, who married Mary Blackwood and moved west,
48 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Samuel, who married Mary Johnston, of the Hawfields,
and moved west.
David and John went to the West.
Isabel, who married James Johnston, of the Hawfields,
and whose descendants are still there. One of her descen-
dants, T. C. Johnston, is at the present time a ruling elder
in the Hawfields church.
Elanor, who married John Blackwood, was the mother of
thirteen children, whose names will be noticed under the
Sarah, who married Johnston Blackwocd, and moved away.
who was perhaps the third son, married Rebecca Ball, by
whom he had eight children, as follows : —
William, who married Mary McBryde, at the place where
David A. Claytor now lives, and moved to South Carolina.
I have never been able to find any traces of this family,
though there were several children, and they located in one
of the border counties, perhaps Chesterfield. I think the
name of one of his daughters was Scynthia.
Nancy, who married Joseph Mallette, and who was the
mother of Mrs. Tinnin in the Hawfields, and of Rebecca,
who married first Thomas Jacobs, the father of Nancy, who
married Isaac Craig and Col. William McCauley; and of
Harriet, who married Cameron Craig, the father of Sandy,
Johnston, William, etc. Rebecca was married a second time
to Charles Freeland.
James, who married Sarah Burns, a daughter of Andrew,
who was a son of William. James Craig was the father of
Mis. William Cheek, who had a large family, some of whom
were Calvin, Mrs. Murphy Smith, etc. His other children
all moved away.
Margaret who married Robert Nichols and moved to
Isaac, who married two wives, Betsy Murray and Nancy
Jacobs, and who died without children.
John never married, and died at the age of about twenty-
FAMILY HISTOKY. 49
five. He was a great sufferer with white swelling, and was
said to have been a very intelligent man.
Rebecca never married and lived at the old homestead to
an advanced age, when she died very suddenly. She was a
good woman, and was a mother to my grandfather's children,
after his wife died.
David, who married Isabel Nelson, a daughter of John
Nelson of the Hawfields, and who was the father of six chil-
dren. He was born Oct. 1786, and died of cancer in the eye,
Nov. 12, 1862. His children were Jennie, Rebecca and John,
all of whom died young; Wiley and Isabel, who never mar-
ried, and lived together at the old home until recently, Oct.
21, 1890, when Wiley died, leaving Isabel all alone. His
other child, James Newton, was my father, and married
Emeline Strayhorn, a daughter of Samuel, a son of William,
a son of Gilbert, the patriarch. My father was the only one
who perpetuated the name of Craig in N. C, in a direct line,
through James, the son of William. I am one of ten chil-
dren, eight of whom are still living. My father was born
Oct. 14, 1816, and died Feb. 12, 1879.
the youngest child, married Mary Johnston, of the Haw-
fields, and was the father of eight children, as follows: —
William, who married Sarah Woods.
Samuel, who married two wives, Martha Kirkland and
Martha Easters. By the first wife two of his children were
Mary and Martha. Mary was the mother of George S. Free-
land, and Martha married John Paul late in life.
Martha, who married Andrew Burns, and who was the
mother of William, Samuel, Margaret and Anderson. The
latter moved to Texas.
Betsy, who married William Kirkland, the father o£
William S. who was an elder, and of John, who was Ihe
father of Richard, Irvin and John.
Isabel, who married Joseph Kirkland, the father of Sam-
uel, the elder, John, Joseph. -Tames, William, etc.
David was drowned.
HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
Jane, who married George Mitchell.
Margaret, who married James Mitchell.
the only daughter, married David Nelson, of the Hawfields,
by whom she had a large family. Some of her children
were as follows: —
Samuel, who married a Miss Tate.
Lettie, who married James Tate, and two of her daughters
married brothers by the name of Allen.
John married Jennie Tate, and was the father of thirteen
children. He was for many years an elder in the Hawfields
church, and the names of his numerous family were as fol-
lows: Isabel, who married David W. Craig, my grandfather;
Janette, William and George never married; David, John,
James, Alfred and Josiah all moved west; Samuel, who mar-
ried Sarah Burnsides, whose sons all died in the war; Mary,
who married John Paul, whose sons moved west, and some
of whose daughters, Mrs. Miles, Mrs. James Squires, etc.,
still live in the Hawfields; Margaret, who married John Hart,
and moved west; Paisley, who married Margaret Smith, whose
son, Samuel, and daughter, Mrs. Margaret Thompson, still
live in the Hawfields.
THE BLACKWOOD FAMILY.
William Blackwood, like Gilbert Stiayhorn and William
Craig, was one of the Patriarchs of New Hope, and he was
the rich man of the congregation in his day. It is said his
lands were four miles in extent from east to west, — from near
Robson's old mill to the old road leading from Chapel Hill
A story is told of him which well illustrates the sturdy
Scotch character and customs. When either John Craig or
Charles Johnston asked him for his daughter in marriage,
falling back upon the customs of Scotland, he said to the
young man, " I have a thousand acres of land, besides other
property to give to my daughter, and have you an equal
amount to start with her ? " The young man had to answer,
FAMILY HISTOKY. 51
no! and consent to the marriage was refused.
But it mattered not, mill day soon came round and bis girl
had to go, but she did not return, for a conspiracy had. been
formed by the young couple and the wedding was over. The
old man was beaten and had the " pouts " for weeks, but per-
haps remembering his own sins, he sent for his children to
come home, and gave them his blessing as well as the portion
It would be almost impossible for me to enlarge in any
great measure upon this family without repeating much of
what I have already written, And the same might be said
of the Kirkland and Freeland families, for they are all close-
ly connected, and the history of one greatly involves the his-
tory of the others.
As stated elsewhere. William Blackwood, the original set-
tler, had eight children, and the name has been perpetuated
in the New Hope congregation through his son.
who married Margaret King, by whom he had sixteen chil-
dren — four sons and twelve daughters. I have been
informed that the daughters married as follows:
Elizabeth; who married George Allen, of Tennessee.
Hannah, who married Willoughby Selph, of Virginia.
Mary, who married William Craig, son of David.
Martha, who married Johnston Craig, son of David.
Jennie, who married John McCauley.
Annie, who married Jacob Potts.
Margaret, who married William Long, of Tennessee.
Sarah, who married John Gattis, of Georgia.
Nancy, who married James and Silas Davis.
♦ Fannie, who married Anderson Long.
Isabel, and Katy, died unmarried.
The four sons were William, James, and Johnston, who
all moved away, and John, the perpetuator of the name on
the waters of New Hope.
This man, John Blackwood, was twice married; first to
Elanor Craig, the daughter of David the son of William, by
52 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
whom he had thirteen children, and second to Mary McCau-
ley, by whom he had seven childien — twenty in all. His
children by Elanor Craig were as follows : Mary, who mar-
ried James Strayhorn, the father of Calvin, Robert, Magrgie
and Mrs. Julia Hogan; David ? who married Tabitha Minor,
of Granville, and was the father of John M., Samuel D., the
elder, Mrs. Ward, Mrs. Mary Blackwood and Mrs. Julia
Kirkland; William, who was an elder, married Martha Minor,
of Granville, and was the father of John T., William, etc.;
Margaret who married John McCauley, the father of David,
James, etc,; Isabel, Samuel and Jackson never married; John,
who married Laura Springs, of South Carolina; Nathaniel,
who married Mary Jones, of Johnston county; Alexander,
who married Helen Horton, and became a Baptist minister;
Robert married Susan Stanley, of Surry county; Johnston
married Rebecca Teel, of New Jersey. The first three men-
tioned above remained in the bounds of New Hope, the others
all moved away. I have no knowledge of John Blackwood's
children by Mary McCauley.
THE KIRKLAND FAMILY.
This family has furnished the church with three ruling
elders — Joseph, in 1840; William S., in 1859, and Samuel, in
1879. At the present time it has a large number of male rep-
resentatives, two of whom are deacons, Joseph and William,
brothers of the elder. Joseph married Julia Blackwood, a
sister of Samuel, the elder, and William married Elizabeth
Craig, the daughter of John, the son of Alexander, the son of
John Craig. And also her grandmother was Jane Strayhorn,
the daughter of John, the son of Gilbert Strayhorn.
I am not sufficiently acquainted with the history of the
original members of the family so as to speak with certainty
in reference to them. But enough has been said to show
their connection with the founders of the church, and thereby
illustrating the truth of God's promises.
I am not competent with my present fund of information
to enter into any detailed account of the Freeland, Hogan
and Johnston families.
FAMILY HISTORY. 53
The Freelands are the oldest in connection with the church,
and were perhaps among its original organizers, though the
Hogans came to North Carolina about the same time, and
perhaps in company with them. It is said that both families
settled in what is now the western part of the village of
Chapel Hill about the same time the first settlers located on
New Hope. It is certain that John Freeland was elder in
New Hope church as far back as 1796, as the record show.
This man was the grandfather of John A. Freeland of whom
mention has been made.
The Johnston family, as before stated, is of later date, and
at the present time has only one male representative, C. W.
Johnston, an elder, and a descendant, on his mother's side, of
Gilbert Stray horn The present Mr. Johnston mariied a
daughter of the well known educator, Samuel W. Hughes,
deceased, and has a large family of children, some of whom
are members of the church.
54 HISTORY OF NEW HOPE CHURCH.
In glancing over what I have written I see how imperfect,
incomplete and unsatisfactory my work has been. And in
endeavoring to give some accou nt of the church from her
earliest history to the present day it has involved the partial
history of families — and especially of my own — which might
seem presumptuous; but I disclaim every motive save the
hope that it might be of use to future generations, enabling
them to see their ancestry, and causing them to remember
God's promises. And if anything has been preserved which
otherwise might have been lost, and which may tend to the
glory of God, I am satisfied.
A century and a quarter have wrought great changes in the
world, since our ancestors were divinely led to worship God
on the hill of New Hope; but through all these changes their
representatives are still abiding under the shadow of ihe old
vine. Political and financial convulsions, fire, wars and rev-
olutions have failed to destroy or annul the promise of God
to His people. At the same old homes, on the same old
plantations are the same old names, and the people still
come to worship God at the same old place, near to the
graves of their ancestors, and in the midst of sweet associa-
tions and hallowed memories. And why is all this ? It is
because of the love of God in Christ to our fathers and to us
their children. Here the gospel has been preached; here its
ordinances have been administered, and here immortal souls
have been born into the kingdom of heaven.
May the God of all grace continue to bless the people of
New Hope; and may you, dear reader, and your children and
your children's children — may all of us and our posterity
through all time be found in His service and abide under
AUG 2 5
OCT 2 4
(2d d K
DEU i 51
mjg r 2i
C C P ^ ft
btt l U
-' ;•- "■ 1 t